Advice needed, should I pursue MSN? At University of Phoenix?

Nurses Career Support


Hello lovely readers of this thread:). I really am looking for advice. I have been a RN for a year now...but I have a future goal of becoming a nurse manager or a supervisor. I think I am going to enroll at University of Phoenix for their MSN program. My hope is that it will open doors in administration and teaching. Is it worth it? Do you think it's a good investment? My gut is that it would be a good move...I know a couple people who have gone there and both have said that it has opened doors for them. My fear is that I will pursue this degree, go into debt with student loans, and then not be able to make use of it. It will take me about 18 mos. to which time I'll have been a nurse for almost 3 yrs.

I truly would appreciate any advice....and I thank you in advance for any you may have:). I just want to put myself on the right path towards achieving my goals......


9 Posts

I have an MSN from UoPhx. I truthfully would not recommend it. It is very expensive. (I finished in 2001 and MSN classes were $300.00 per credit--each class was 3 credits.) But mostly I would not recommend it because it is what I call a "generic" MSN. Once you graduate, everyone will ask you what your master's degree is in. They will be expecting to hear "advanced practice, nurse practitioner, administration, education," etc. Well, University of Phoenix is none of those. I did a practicum experience in education--but no where on my diploma does it say that my MSN is nursing education. If I had to do it over again, I'd pick a school that is going to give me a specific education/career track.

Hope that helps.


439 Posts

Specializes in ED.

My advice: No. I think there are a lot better, and cheaper schools out there, schools that have specialty programs and clinical connections. Further, I don't think that going to get an MSN with only one year under your belt is a good idea. Work for a while, find out what you like and specialize in it. Then find a job that will pay for your MSN and get it at a regular school.

Trauma Columnist

traumaRUs, MSN, APRN

97 Articles; 21,237 Posts

Specializes in Nephrology, Cardiology, ER, ICU.

I did get my MSN from UofP with a concentration in management and leadership - graduated in 2005. It served its purpose for me which was to quickly get an MSN so I could go on to a clinical post-MSN.

Specializes in Critical Care, Education.

You are correct in thinking that an MSN will facilitate moving into management positions. In my neck of the woods, 'MSN preferred' is becoming a very common job requirement for all levels of nursing management.

That being said, I would encourage you to investigate 'bricks and mortar' schools that have distance options for graduate school. Most larger universities are now offering a variety of delivery methods for MSN programs. There are definite benefits... First of all, they are cheaper than 'commercial' schools such as U of P, and most continue to follow a traditional 'pay by the course' structure rather than the 'package deals' that U of P is notorious for (known to leave students obligated to pay out the contract even if they drop out of the program). Your diploma (and resume) will reflect graduation from a well-respected university no matter whether you choose to do the traditional classroom route or opt for the distance/online version. You will be able to obtain an MSN with a clinical focus from a university & you can easily 'morph' this into an NP or CNS with just a few more classes - cannot do this with the generic MSN from a commercial school. Lastly, if you choose to move into an academic position in the future, it will be very difficult with a degree from a commercial college - because academic recruiters know that it did not come with exposure to an authentic scholarly environment.

Keep in mind that grad school is not structured like undergrad. Most of the time, classes are only once a week. I managed to go full-time for my (traditional) MSN while working full time. Some schools have part-time options as well. Financial support is more available because of increased Federal funding for advanced nursing degrees.

Best of luck to you! Keep us posted on your progress.


78 Posts

Thank you all for your responses...I do appreciate it. The reason it is attractive to me is that I can do it in 18 months. If I went to the university college, which I work for the associated hospital, it would take me like 5 years. I have no desire to be a NP or CNS...I just want to be able to move into management as soon as possible. I have a BBA in Management, a BSN....and I thought a MSN (though yes, generic), would be a good move. I just want it to open doors......ugh, decisions, decisions......

Again, I really do appreciate the responses from each of you...I love advice from peers and I thank you for your time in responding:).


10 Posts

Specializes in Admin.

I would definitely agree with all responses and say the University of Phoenix would be a waste of your time, money and efforts; I've seen it first hand - not in this area of study, but all the same responses.

Best of luck to you in all of your endeavors.

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